Five Just Stop Oil supporters found guilty of disrupting London’s roads while four acquitted

Five Just Stop Oil Supporters have been found guilty of disrupting key roads within central London, while four others have been acquitted of wilful obstruction of the highway. The Just Stop Oil supporters were demanding that the government halt licensing and consents for the development of any new fossil-fuel projects in the UK. [1]

Jason Beckett, Sophie Cardinal, Fay Pisani and Helen Sheldrake were declared ‘not guilty’ by Judge Ciecora at Westminster Magistrates Court on Tuesday, in relation to peacefully blocking the road outside the Harrods department store, on the 20th October 2022. Stefi Morasi pleaded guilty during the trial and will be sentenced in due course. The result comes after six other Just Stop Oil supporters were recently found guilty for blocking the very same road, at the same time. [2] [3]

On Monday four other Just Stop Oil supporters appeared before Judge Goldspring at Westminster Magistrates Court, in relation to peacefully blocking Harleyford Street, near the Oval, on the 29th October 2022. David and Mary Sommerville were ordered to pay £176 towards court costs, whilst Imogen Mcbeath and Elizabeth Tate were ordered to pay £76 towards court costs. All four were sentenced to a six month conditional discharge. [4]

Speaking before her trial, Sophie Cardinal, 29, a former assistant ecologist, said:

“Since 1970, we have lost 69% of wildlife populations and when I am 36 (seven years from now), scientists predict we will have breached almost all planetary boundaries that make the earth safe for human habitation.”

“I will likely witness the collapse of ecosystems and human civilisation in my lifetime, because of the government and corporate elite, who are hell-bent on continuing business as usual. I face court knowing that I will likely be found guilty, but knowing in my heart of hearts that I did the right thing. I could not learn of such horror and injustice, whilst feeling the fear and anger that I do, only to sit by and do nothing. I have tried everything else.”

Helen Sheldrake, 66, a retired primary school teacher, said:

“Despite all the rhetoric, this government shows no real commitment to take the urgently needed action to transition away from fossil fuels. The interests of a small, powerful, wealthy elite take precedence over the catastrophic consequences that will be suffered by us all, if we fail to achieve keeping to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.”

Disturbingly, recent modelling from the UK Met office indicates that the world could pass the 1.5 degree Paris Agreement threshold as early as 2024, due to a shift to an El Niño weather pattern. [5]

A Just Stop Oil Spokesperson said:

“Our legal system is in disarray as judges and magistrates grapple with the tension between what is morally right and what is legally right. At the same time, when juries are given the full facts around defendants motivations, they increasingly acquit them.”

“We have seen one judge attempting to prevent juries from hearing the truth by silencing good people from speaking about their motivations for action in court, and then imprisoning those who dare speak up. Leading lawyers are expressing their deep concern about this increasingly authoritarian approach. We all need to be vigilant. If the judiciary doesn’t stand for justice what does it stand for?” [6]

Since the Just Stop Oil campaign launched on the 14th February 2022, there have been over 2,000 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial. There are currently two Just Stop Oil supporters and two Insulate Britain supporters in prison whilst awaiting trial or serving sentences for actions taken with the campaigns.

We stand with these four supporters in prison, with the 1,800 victims of our broken criminal justice system, imprisoned for over a year without trial and with the 1,700 murdered across the global south, for protecting all our lives. [7] [8]

This is the moment for us to come together and resist the destruction of everything we love, something that is being imposed on us by a few, who only seek to enrich themselves.

We’re done with begging. We are going to stop new fossil fuel projects whether those in power agree or not. As citizens, parents and children, we have every right under British law to protect ourselves and those we love.

We are the last generation who can solve this. Will you step up? Join us and Just Stop Oil.


Press contact: 07762 987334

Press email: [email protected]

High quality images & video here:







Notes to Editors

[1] Just Stop Oil is a coalition of groups working together to demand that the government immediately halt all future licensing and consents for the exploration, development and production of fossil fuels in the UK. Just Stop Oil is a member of the A22 Network of civil resistance projects. Climate Emergency Fund is Just Stop Oil’s primary funder for recruitment, training, and capacity building.

[2] Link to press release from October 20th-

[3] Link to press release from 22nd Feb 2023-

Six Just Stop Oil Supporters who Disrupted Harrods Found Guilty

[4] Link to press release from 29th October 2022-



[7]  Fair Trials reports that the number of people being held in prison without trial in England and Wales is at its highest for over 50 years.

[8] A recent report from Global Witness says that more than 1,700 people have died while trying to prevent mining, oil drilling or logging on their lands.